The city will get its 100th new-age train within a week, three years after these violet-and-white trains first started running on the suburban network.
"The train is scheduled to leave the Integral Coach Factory in Chennai on September 14 and is expected to reach Mumbai in two days," said P.C. Sehgal, managing director, Mumbai Rail Vikas Corporation (MRVC).
The 100th train is expected to go to the Western Railway (WR), taking its new fleet to 52. All new trains are 12 coaches. The MRVC is procuring these trains on behalf of the Western and Central Railways as part of the Mumbai Urban Transport Project (MUTP).
Under phase I of the MUTP, a total of 129 new trains will run on the suburban line, all of which will reach Mumbai by June 2011. As part of the second phase, the city will get 72 new trains, which will complete the replacement of all the old trains currently running on the suburban line. The replacement will take at least two years once the second phase begins in 2012.
"On an average, the city gets four new trains from ICF every month. These are divided among Western and Central Railway depending on the need," said a senior railway official, requesting anonymity.
These trains, first introduced in November 2007, are touted to have better ventilation, broader seats and run faster.
These trains have undergone several changes since they first started running on the suburban network, following commuter suggestions and complaints.
The new trains are essential for conversion of the network from the 1,500-volt Direct Current (DC) to 25,000-volt Alternating Current (AC). The WR has started conversion work between Borivli and Churchgate, while the CR is doing conversion between Kalyan and Vangini.